-describes Mary Poppins of course...for those who have not seen the movie in 20 years.
The phrase also describes my Rachel. She is just delicious, ya know. I always take 50% of the credit for that. Hubby gets the other 50%. We are good parents. No- we are great parents. Lots of love, a goodly amount of patience, two terrific senses of humor, an awesome big sister for little Ray Ray to emulate -whom we raised as well (see how that works?) We have the same goals for our kids. We, as parents, balance each other really well. We have been reading to our kids since they were mere specks of rice in utero. We always laugh, praise, encourage and nourish. We gently admonish (snarky grin) when necessary careful not to break those delicately maturing psyches. And are firm when called for. Basically, you get the gist. We are awesome. Jump back, kiss myself, kiss, kiss.
But the title of this post is a giveaway that all is not perfect - it's practically perfect. I am ashamed to admit this but as parents we SUCK at one thing. Potty Training. Yes- we have a 4 year old who just won't do her thing #1 without me standing at the bathroom door and #2 on the potty at all. She is a friggin' camel. Holds her water all the live long day! And the poop thing? No amount of bribery, cajoling, enticement will do it for her.
This is a rundown of suggestions from friends, parents, self-help guides, teachers, doctors...and what we have tried and what hasn't worked to date.
Treats: Tried the jellybeans, m&m's, hershey bars, cookies, gum, standing rib roast, new porche, house in Maui....nothing will make this kid 'sing'. I have given treats for just the mere mention of recognizing that 'tickle' in her tummy. I have left a trail of treats from the family room to the potty. She walked around them like they weren't there. I have gift wrapped the treats in pretty packages and left them on the bathroom sink. She asks "what's that?" and as soon as I tell her that if she goes on the potty, she can open it and find out. She stops asking and pretends they are not there anymore. I have even found the gift in the trashcan on several occasions.
Disney: We'll go there as soon as she goes there. "I don't want to go Disney" (her)
Sleepovers: You can't go there unless you go there. " I don't want a sleepover"(her)
Dinner and a Movie/ vacation/ anywhere that takes more than 2 hours I can't go there unless she goes there. " I wanna go to dinner and movie/vacation/anywhere that takes more than 2 hours " (me)
Summer Camp/Pool Party/the new Wall-e movie/playland at the mall/ the park /outside to play/in my room you get it?? You can't go anywhere until you GO there!!! "I don't want to do anything". (her)
I am basically held captive by my child's bowels. If I stop giving in (which I have once or twice), she holds it in until her eyes fill with tears (an pee) and she is doubled over in pain. What am I to do? When we do leave her with a sitter, she doesn't go at all. Except with 'illa' our one day a week nanny/housekeeper who has been with us since Rachel was 6 months old. And with her it is only in dire emergency.
I try not to get angry - but time's a tickin'! We have plans in October and I don't want to cancel them because my kid won't open the floodgates on a regular basis. I am usually against this kinda thing - but I'll take any suggestions. Chances are - we've tried it.
You see, the 50% she got from me includes stubborness and giving the silent treatment. She will not give. And when we try to discuss it, she clams up tight. Goes all "Tommy, can you hear me?" on us. I do that too. Even when I know I am wrong- I will not relent. I will go stone silent. The tension can be palpable. That's my contribution to the fold...well, about 10% of my half, anyway.
Other than this one little thing - well, this one BIG thing - the kid is perfect!! Seriously, she is easy going, happy, funny, sweet, smart, physically adept, warm, charming...I can go on and on and on. The kid's a freak of nature in more ways than one. In this one way, she is the wrath of nature.
I need help. Professional help maybe. And not just for the kid.
*author's note: this post is dedicated solely to Rachel. I am sure, in time, I will devote much blogging to Emily Rose as I am sure that I will have embarrassing parental admissions of failure regarding her upbringing as well.